So I'm going to skip out a lot of the basics like coming up with an idea, a name, identifying your target audience etc. in this post and focus a bit more on the technical stuff (because I think that's what people really want to know!).
So one of the most important things you need to identify at first is your budget (# of people on your podcast will affect this). Really you can start a podcast under any budget from just recording episodes using the microphone in your phone to splashing the cash on some of the professional gear. I've always seemed to find, not only in this case but with most instances when it comes to tech, as you spend more the less you get for your return (e.g. the difference in quality between an item that costs £10 and £100 is huge but the diffrence between an item that costs £500 and £1000 is not that much). Obviously this is a bit of a blanket statement and isn't factual in all cases but is a good general rule of thumb.
Below I'll list some of my recommendations from research from least to most expensive and highlight which ones we use on our Podcast in bold. I won't go into detail for each item as there are probably much better resources for that but if there's something specific I've found i'll mention it!
You can get XLR and/or USB microphones. XLR microphones produce slightly better quality but you can reduce the equipment you need with a USB one.
Reduces plosives/popping sounds (e.g. P's and B's).
Isolate microphones from mechanically transmitted noise (e.g bangs on table).
Required to record audio from XLR microphones and also ability to plug into your computer. From these, you can also adjust the volume of individual microphones.
Not necessarilly needed but I'd recommend just so you can keep track of your audio levels and how it all sounds while recording.
We use the same software to record and edit our audio. We started out by using Audacity (cross-platform) and/or Garageband (Mac only) - both free pieces of software but I found them both to be a bit basic and personally I didn't like the interface of Audacity lol. Having said that they are both perfectly usable to produce a high quality podcast. We now use Adobe Audition for recording and everything which can be a bit intimidating at first but after getting used to it I find it a lot quicker to do the most common actions I feel you need when a editing a podcast which is a simple selection of audio, splitting the clip(s) and deleting.
When recording our podcast, we have 3 inputs (myself and Hamish as the 2 hosts + 1 other guest) so we record and edit using 3 seperate tracks. You can imagine this a 3 seperate files, one for each person and that audio file only contains the voice of that person.
After editing, we mix the tracks creating one file and put this into an online tool called Auphonic. This analyses your audio and produces a professional quality result by doing some cool stuff such as levelling the audio to make sure it fits podcast standards, loudness normalization and others.
To get your podcast published across podcast platforms (Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts etc) you need to use a podcast host. These hosts store your audio and allow your listeners to listen, download, and subscribe to your podcast by auto distributing it to the platforms via an RSS feed.
You first create an account with this podcast host, tell them the name of you podcast, give it a description, upload your artwork (must be square) and some other fairly basic stuff. Once you've done this, every time you want to upload an episode you log into your host and upload it here. On average we've found that it takes 1-2 hours for the episode to be distributed everywhere after you've uploaded it (there have been occasions where Apple Podcasts in particular has taken longer). When you upload your first episode this can take even longer, potentially even weeks to get approved. Just be careful of that if you have a planned release date.
We're still working on that 😬.
Some other useful tools we use that are particularly of note:
I'm no pro with any of this, myself and my friend and co-host Hamish started our own podcast in late September 2019 so we're still relatively new to the game but these are just some things we've found during this process. If you are interested go listen to our podcast, The Third Wheel follow us on insta and twitter and even better, if you want to be a guest - get in touch and reach out to us!